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Thread: Apple Patents Gestures

  1. #1
    MMi Staff Writer Paul Daniel Ash's Avatar
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    Default Apple Patents Gestures


    In a potentially significant ruling, the US Patent and Trademark Office has granted Apple, Inc. a sweeping patent for twenty-four gestures and chorded finger positions for controlling a future touchscreen OS. This means that Apple could pretty much own multitouch… it's as if the company had patented the double-click back when the first Macintosh operating system was released in 1984. If Apple is successful in making these gestures standard for touchscreen interfaces, any other company who wants to use them will have to license them from Apple.

    Patently Apple describes the scheme (sort of confusingly entitled "System and method for packing multitouch gestures onto a hand"), which specifies that some commands will be executed with your hand in a "neutral" position, with different fingers pressed to the screen, and that other, less frequently used commands will involve touching fingers to the screen in a "spread-hand" position. For example, all four fingers in a neutral position on the screen will pan the screen right and left. The same gesture with a spread hand will move the cursor to the beginning or end of the line. It seems like one of those things that's hard to describe but easy to do once you get used to it.

    One risk here is that other touchscreen platforms (O HAI, ANDROID) will use a different set of gestures to avoid patent infringement, and so we'll have a different "gesture vocabulary" to use different devices. The likelihood is that we'll eventually settle on a single standard set of gestures, though… and Apple is obviously hoping that it will be theirs.

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    Gustavo Saliola (04-29-2010)

  3. #2
    That would suck...

  4. #3
    Apple officially owning multitouch... sounds scary.. They might start mass producing killer robots (with multitouch support).

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    k.nitsua (04-29-2010), PlatoTheForms (04-29-2010)

  6. #4
    I know apple likes to patent stuff they might never use but if we gotta learn all that it takes from apples simplicity

  7. #5
    This is the kind of stuff that will give us all carpel tunnel syndrome...

  8. #6
    Livin the iPhone Life adp's Avatar
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    Good luck memorizing all of this. The first few seem to be ok. But some of those gestures are ridiculously useless.
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  9. #7
    Apple is going to legally change their corp name next year......to SKYNET

  10. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by giancarlo View Post
    Apple is going to legally change their corp name next year......to SKYNET


    Now this means that these blowhards will be suing any laptop maker who has been using multitouch trackpads over the past 18 months.

    Great. Can someone get Obama to overhaul the patent system in America. Its as bad a problem, if not worse, than the deregulation of capital markets.
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  11. #9
    iPhone? More like MyPhone PlatoTheForms's Avatar
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    lol this is ridiculous; These gestures look very comfortable and natural; it would suck for them to only be limited to Apple devices.

  12. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by cpkirkley View Post


    Now this means that these blowhards will be suing any laptop maker who has been using multitouch trackpads over the past 18 months.

    Great. Can someone get Obama to overhaul the patent system in America. Its as bad a problem, if not worse, than the deregulation of capital markets.
    I can't understand half the items your macbook killer has.....that's awesome.

    I take that back...actually just had to breath for a moment and read it. Friggin MONSTER drink
    Last edited by giancarlo; 04-29-2010 at 01:06 PM.

  13. #11
    This won't mean much when the world (re)discovers that stylus pens are way better than the extremely inaccurate sausage-jab.

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    rampagebegins (04-30-2010)

  15. #12
    This is one of those 5% of apple patents that will probably actually be used

  16. #13
    This is such a ridiculously sweeping patent that there must be some sort of prior art that will invalidate, or at least significantly weaken it.

    And at least some of those gestures definitely fail the "non-obviousness" clause.

  17. #14
    iPhone? More like MyPhone Bluprint's Avatar
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    Great more lawsuits are going to follow because of a dumb patent, there should be a petition against owning the rights to any gestures. Next thing you know apple is going to patent my iphone going inside my pocket, oh wait.
    Last edited by Bluprint; 04-29-2010 at 04:29 PM.

  18. #15
    iPhoneaholic reddawg's Avatar
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    This is ridiculous. They should only have allowed the patent on the technology side, not on the gestures (look and feel). The patent courts have no understanding when it comes to technology.
    "When I die, I want to go peacefully in my sleep like my grandfather did...not kicking and screaming like the passengers in his car." -- Unknown

  19. #16
    In oth€r n€ws, Appl€ has pat€nt€d th€ fifth l€tt€r of th€ €nglish alphab€t...

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    rampagebegins (04-30-2010)

  21. #17
    this is the dumbest thing i have every seen. what is wrong with apple lately? ur seriously going to patent how i move my fingers around on the phone? i mean seriously. so it looks like u can use ur middle finger and thumb on the iphone, but what if i want to patent using the index finger and thumb on my nexus, could i do that? this is getting out of control and the people at the patent office need to start brushing up on electronics, touchscreen and how the future will probably be; in terms of mobile devices and how we interact with them. there has to be some limitations on patents. so i will get sued for using my index finger and thumb if im like HTC or something but ill be okay if i use my index and middle finger? WHATS THE DIFFERENCE?! does the touch screen have a fingerprint scanner that determines what finger im using? my god!.....rant over.

  22. #18
    patent law implementation sucks.

  23. #19
    Quote Originally Posted by giancarlo View Post
    Apple is going to legally change their corp name next year......to SKYNET
    and google changed their name to topeka...lol

  24. #20
    interesting. reminds me of a sign language spread sheet.
    killall Terminal[]

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